meanwhile, at this quietly excellent restaurant:

There are a couple of lesbians in their sixties or seventies eating dinner with their grandson.  One is explaining to him that they are waiting to get married until gay marriage becomes legal according to the federal government. 

She is describing her staunch resolve to hold out for nationwide marriage equality despite being able to legally marry in her state of residence.  Her grandson wants to know if he can be the ringbearer in the wedding.

minimalism and khakis:

Fact: I love minimalism primarily because I despise moving.

When I was in college, my parents (quite graciously, I might add. Hi, Mom!) came to help me pack all of my dorm room things into a storage pod after every year of school.  Every year, I would say to myself, "Okay this time I will actually be mostly packed by the time my folks get here.".

Alas, every year, my mother would open the door to my room and say some permutation of, "WOW you have so much stuff.  How does it all fit in here?".  Sigh.

I'd always start packing while I was taking finals, which admittedly was not the wisest plan in the world.  I'd pack the easy things first - books I never read, winter clothing, that giant array of crafty things on the bottom shelf of the bookcase, SO MUCH YARN, et cetera.  This meant of course that all the annoying/oddly shaped things were the ones left to pack by the time my parents arrived.

Tangent!  One year, I decided to store my stuff in the creepy basement of the house I lived in over the summer instead of using a storage pod.  I'm not sure why I decided to do this, since one of my first experiences at college was bleach-staining my pants trying to salvage a new buddy's stuff that she'd stored downstairs...and an entire gallon of bleach had spilled on her things.  Gah.

Anyways, the stuff stored in the "trunk room" had to meet various and sundry standards to avoid being thrown out over the summer.  No storage of furniture was allowed, yet anything that could be packaged into a box was permitted.  My mother constructed a large, awkward box for my papasan chair.  When I praised her for cleverly skirting the rules, she said, "It's not sneaky - it's technical compliance!".

Once in vet school, I realized - hey, if I have less stuff, I will have less of it to move.  The seemingly endless horrible dusty-handed, achy-armed, cobwebs-in-hair ordeal will not last as long.  THIS IS AWESOME.

Anti-consumerism, tiny living, and simplicity are all well and good, but I kid you not when I say that this is the thing that got me on the minimalism train.

So, you know, now I have two pairs of khakis, which is usually fine.  As a vet student on clinics, I can budge in enough time to do laundry approximately once a week.

However, sometimes it's rough when a dog explosively defecates all over your last clean pair of khakis (it's okay, it wasn't his fault). That's the moment when I fleetingly really want about eight pairs of khakis, all stain resistant and exactly the same.

at the urgent care center:

(because you have to go to the urgent care center for your minor problems when you don't have time off during business hours)

butch nurse, to me:  "I like the Human Rights Campaign sticker on your water bottle..."

(sidelong look)

" drive a Subaru?"

wisdom from the pharmacist:

pharmacy person: "I'm sorry it took so long to fill your prescription. I was tending to the pregabalin bush."

me: 'That's awesome."

pharmacy person: "At least it's easier to harvest than the hydrocodone tree."

rough day for the resident:

As far as I can tell, being a resident is like constantly getting punched in the face except for sometimes you get kicked in the kidneys instead.

Some specialties are inherently more or less hard for the residents (surgery = you get called in at 2 am ALL THE TIME vs derm = not so many derm emergencies), but they all seem to have several things in common:

1. You are on call all the time.

2. You are also working all the time.

3. When you're not working or on call, you're supposed to use your free time (hee hee!) to prepare for topic rounds, case rounds, book rounds, +/- do your research for your required publication, for your giant awful exams.

(sometimes the exam pass rates are less than 50%)


This week, one of the residents had an especially hard day.  He came in early to examine the case that got transferred to him overnight, and the first thing he did was spill his blue Powerade all over his white coat and nice clothes.

Then he bent down to examine the dog, stood up to check the record, and hit his head on the fluid pump.

When he crouched down again, I said,

"Dude, I hate to have to say this given how your day is going, but you have a giant hole in the crotch of your pants."

(an orange could have fallen out of his pants through this hole.  it was not small)

Then!  Oh, it gets better!  Then...he went to get a particularly aggressive dog out of the kennels, and as he exited the ward, a most unfortunate thing happened.  He stepped on a patch of wet concrete floor, cartwheeled forward, and slammed his knee on the ground as the dog tore off down the hallway.

a thing I learned:

As a student, one of my jobs (oftentimes) is taking a history from clients while (or before) we start examining their pet.

[Tip! If you're in a veterinary hospital, giving a concise and accurate history of your pet's problem(s) will absolutely make your visit happen faster. Faster!  Faster is better!]

Good history:

"Okay, so Jerry started vomiting last night after I fed him dinner.  He vomited three times, and each time it looked like digested food.  He seemed okay overnight, but he didn't want to eat this morning.  He's been drinking okay, and he hasn't had any diarrhea.  I don't think he's eaten anything he wasn't supposed to."

Bad history:

"Jerry?  Well, I got him when he was three - no, maybe four.  You see, we don't actually know because we adopted him from the neighbor when they moved away.  I think they were moving to Spain so the husband could teach chemistry at a university there.  Maybe it was physics.  Anyway, he was really happy to come and live with us, but my other dogs stare at him all the time.  I think it stresses him out.  He comes and sits by me and breathes loudly.  Except sometimes he stands when he does it.  I don't know why.
Anyway, sometimes I let him out in the yard by himself, but I haven't done that in a while.  Sometimes he stands under the bird feeder.  Last night I fed him dinner while we were eating - we were having roast beef, and I fed him in the kitchen so he wouldn't whine - and after dinner while we were watching Project Runway...

(at this point the other person in the room interrupts)

"No, we were watching The X Factor."

"Whatever.  We were watching The X Factor and he threw up.  I don't know how many times because my husband cleaned them up and he doesn't remember.  I think it might have been four times"

"It was six times."

"How do you know? You never remember anything!"

Et cetera. 

a conversation in the co-op parking lot:

me: "Oh hey!  Are you enjoying your fourth of July?"

professor: "Well, I just did an at-home euthanasia, so there's a dead dog in the back of my truck."

me: " hopefully the day will get better."